10th ANNUAL CELEBRATION
In 2014, New Carlisle Hometown Days celebrated its 10th annual festival. In honor of the milestone, The Championship published three Top 10 lists that looked back on the tournament's history beginning in 2005. These lists were compiled prior to the 2014 Championship and therefore do not reflect that year's or any subsequent years' results. Scroll through below to see the Top 10 Games, Top 10 Teams, and Top 10 Players that were recognized for the tournament's first decade.
NEWTS 29, SPEEDY'S CHICKENHEADS 28 (7 INNINGS)
2008 Championship Game
It's only fitting that the two teams at the top of the all-time rankings played what is widely considered the greatest WIFFLE ball game ever. Newts and Speedy's have met three times in tournament history, with the Newts winning by a run each time. With the 2008 Championship on the line, these two slugged it out for 7 innings before the Newts finally held on for the title.
TACO PUNCHERS 18, WARRIORS 17
The 2012 runners-up Taco Punchers began the weekend piecing together a roster on Saturday morning. Nothing could sum up their wild weekend quite like their semifinal win over the Warriors. Cult West hit 14 homers in the game, but it wasn't enough. Trailing by four heading into the bottom of the sixth, the Taco Punchers rallied for a five-run inning, capped by a three-run walkoff home run by Denis Jedrysek.
MAGIC 12, AMBASSADORS OF PLASTIC 11
2013 Elite Eight
Perhaps the highest-pressure games in the City Championship come in the Elite Eight round, as a trip to Migley is at stake. These two teams met in the same round in 2011. Looking to avenge that loss, the Magic led throughout. Zach Liberatore put Maple City up three late with a two-run double. It was just enough insurance, as the Ambassadors' walkoff hopes fell just short of the centerfield fence.
NEWTS 9, EMERY'S ARMY 8
2008 Elite Eight
The Newts were far from dominant during their 2008 title run, with four of their six wins decided by one run. Emery's Army was an out away from eliminating New Carlisle in the Elite Eight, when outfielder Matt Zakrzewski dropped the potential final out over the fence for a game-tying home run. Koby Keck eventually hit a walkoff, and the Newts survived. The game sparked an incredible rivalry in the ORWBL that continues to this day.
SPEEDY'S CHICKENHEADS 15, KLRC 14
2009 Pool Play
These two teams played in a loaded ORWBL East Division in 2009. Despite very successful seasons, neither made the postseason. However, their pool play meeting in the City Championship had all the drama of playoff WIFFLE ball. Down eight in the fifth, Speedy's homered eight consecutive times to tie the game. While KLRC answered with a solo shot in the sixth, JD Gaylor delivered a two-run walkoff in the bottom half.
THE MUFFS 8, LOU BROCK 7
2012 Pool Play
Over the years, The Muffs have quite possibly played the toughest schedule of any team in the tournament. In 2012, they beat two teams which went on to the Hometown Cup Finals. Both games were classics, especially their win over eventual champion Lou Brock. The Muffs held the lead until a six-run fifth by Lou Brock. The Muffs roared back with three in the bottom of the sixth, capped by a Seth Shail walkoff homer.
ONE AND A HALF MEN 1, LOONEY WIFFLERS 0 (8 INNINGS)
2012 Pool Play
With John Arndt out with a knee injury sustained in ORWBL play, the Looney Wifflers played plenty of tight, low-scoring games in 2012. Their pool play classic with One and a Half Men went scoreless into the eighth, before Tommy Sinkiewicz drove in Scott Bartley from third to score the game's only run. The wind at Brandon Hora Field was howling in the entire game.
YTS 4, MELONHEADS 2
2013 Sweet Sixteen
Both YTS and the Melonheads were making their first appearance in the City Championship, and both finished Saturday's pool play with 3-1 records. The matchup between these two powerhouses lived up to the billing. Mike Mitchell broke a 1-1 tie in the fourth with a three-run homer. On defense, Brandon Anderson robbed a potential three-run homer, which is simply known as "The Catch."
SHOCKERS 7, TEAM RAMROD 6 (10 INNINGS)
2007 Pool Play
In what is believed to be the longest game in tournament history, the Shockers clinched first place in their pool and kept Team Ramrod from advancing to Sunday's finals. The 10-inning affair was a fierce battle between two WIFFLE ball titans Jared Emmons and Marc Lindsey. Emmons, whose teams always seem to dominate the pool play rounds, came out on top in this matchup.
THE 4 AMIGOS v. GREAT BALLS OF FIRE
2006 Pool Play
The WIFFLE ball version of the infamous Black Sox Scandal, this pool play game (of which the final score is not even known) should have been unremarkable. However, Tyler Cox of Great Balls of Fire purposely threw the game in exchange for an elephant ear from one of the festival food booths. The agreement was made with Drew Luther of the Amigos, who went on to a runner-up finish.
NEW CARLISLE NEWTS
The tournament's hometown team, the Newts didn't lose a game in their first two tournament appearances. Through 2013, New Carlisle's two titles are still unmatched. The roster has evolved through the years, but this team will be around as long as the tournament is.
Billed from Diamond Lake, Michigan, Speedy's has become a WIFFLE ball institution in New Carlisle. Three consecutive trips to Migley culminated in the 2009 title. Still a tough draw, Speedy's is a name opponents hope they don't see in their pool.
CULT WEST WARRIORS
First competed in New Carlisle as the Mega Powers in 2011, the Warriors returned to their Cult West roots as a member of the ORWBL in 2012. Two consecutive Migley appearances have followed, with the team currently in possession of the Hometown Cup.
AMBASSADORS OF PLASTIC
Essentially an All-Star team with a wealth of WIFFLE ball experience, the Ambassadors made an immediate impact in New Carlisle. In their first year competing, the Ambassadors rolled through a huge tournament field to win it all.
They had no problem reminding everybody of their age, but these veterans certainly didn't play like the old men they claimed to be. Lou Brock made Sunday in 2012 look easy, and were never truly test against some of WIFFLE ball's best.
WHERE MY PITCHES AT?
The tournament field significantly expanded in 2010. Expansion brought an influx of talent, with Where My Pitches At? in the front of the pack. They teamed up with their title game opponent to form Bangin' Pitches the next year, but haven't been back to the tournament since.
Rod Colanese, Chris Deutscher, Matt Flagg, and Ryan Rush didn't know they were playing in the inaugural tournament until a few hours before it began. It's only fitting that these craftsmen of the game are cemented in history as the first champions.
SULTANS OF SWING
Without question the most loaded roster in tournament history, as at least eight players appeared for the Sultans. While the title can't be taken away from them, their lasting legacy on the tournament is leading to roster rules reform with the Sultans of Swing Amendment.
KROOK KOUNTY KILLAZ
Originally known as the Kekambas, this team made its first trip to Migley in 2009. They returned in 2011, falling to the Ambassadors in the title game. Known as the Killaz since 2010, this team is as competitive as they come and is always in the title discussion.
A proud WIFFLE ball franchise, the Pterodactyls underwent a complete overhaul prior to the 2012 ORWBL season. The new team has had limited success, but under founder Jared Emmons, this team was among the elite from 2009-2011.
A true pioneer of the sport, Curless is one of the icons of WIFFLE ball. He has played in every single tournament, winning three straight championships (2006-2008). Also a legendary figure in the ORWBL, Curless is no stranger to the long-ball.
Serge brought his team, Speedy's Chickenheads to New Carlisle in 2007, and they've been a major player in the tournament ever since. Three straight trips to Migley culminated in a championship in 2009. Arugably the greatest fielder in history, he also hits for an incredible average.
Known as the "X-Factor," Flagg was the definition of a crafty vet. He captained the championship team of the inaugural tournament and later won two more titles with the Newts. At the plate, Flagg had the ability to place the ball anywhere he wanted to on the field.
One of only three players to compete in every tournament, Shail has emerged in recent years a star with The Muffs. He led the squad to a Hometown Cup Finals appearance in 2010. An impossible out, Shail has The Muffs in title contention each year.
Anderson is also in the exclusive club of players who have played in every tournament. At age 14, he finished runner-up as one of the 4 Amigos. Anderson has made three trips back to Migley since, and seems to be set up for long-term success as the ace of the Magic.
Arndt also started at a young age and has played in every tournament except 2013. A member of Ballz Deep, he reached the Hometown Cup Finals in 2009. From 2010-2012, Arndt was a dominant force in the Home Run Derby, with three consecutive titles.
Possibly the greatest pure power hitter the game has ever seen, Jedrysek's at bats per home run ratio would be insane if it were a statistic (or if the Championship kept any statistics). He hit perhaps the most memorable homer in tournament history with a walk-off in the semis of the 2012 Hometown Cup Finals.
Also known as "HR Guy," Soos has made an immediate impact on the City Championship. He has led Cult West to consecutive Hometown Cup Finals appearances, ultimately raising the Cup in 2013. Soos seems to play at another level when Sunday rolls around.
Another member of the reigning champions, Ryans does it both at the plate and on the mound. Cult West's two appearances in the Hometown Cup Finals have demonstrated something Newts fans know all too well, this guy loves to hit at Migley Field.
A huge component to the enormous success Speedy's Chickenheads has enjoyed in the tournament, Serge is the power souce in the lineup. He's been on board for all three Hometown Cup Finals appearances, including the 2009 Championship.